The one and only Kosmopolit

… is a typewriter! I must admit I was not aware of this when thinking about a title for this blog. The original Kosmopolit was invented in 1887 in Hamburg and had one amazing feature: the type style could be changed into other alphabets (like Cyrillic!). Indeed truly cosmopolitan…. 😉 I don’t know if anyone else has ever blogged about a typewriter but somehow it is fascinating to see the technological development from Kosmopolit (original version 1.0) to Kosmopolit (2.0 but always beta) in the last 100 years!


And I must admit, some of the facts about the Kosmopolit typewriter could also be said for this blog (except the thing about the English insurance office). I also would never call my writing clear and beautiful … well, for the time being, I just hope I will not end up producing pencil sharpeners… But please read the facts:


The Kosmopolit found only a limited market, but where it was used, it was prized for its sturdiness and for its beautiful, clear typing. It was exported to several European countries, and according to Ernst Martin, it was still used for years after the turn of the century, especially in English insurance offices, to prepare “beautiful” documents. Manufacture must have stopped around 1902-1903, for the last advertisements for the Kosmopolit date from 1903. The Kosmopolit was the last typewriter produced by Guhl & Harbeck; the company later produced one more notable item, the Jupiter pencil sharpener.

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4 responses to “The one and only Kosmopolit

  1. the world needs kosmopolit 😉

    a fine post of a fine guy!


  2. I think you are one of the few to blog about typewriters, and you are an inspiration. Good luck to you, not many people I know would have had the courage to come out of the closet. 😉

    To Florianwagner: Do you think Chuck Norris could beat David Hasselhoff in a hand to hand combat? I know Chuck Norris is a wiz at marshal arts but David has Kitt and is very strong, with all that swimming and all.

  3. florianwagner

    Heyho Wacko Paco,

    no, good ol’ Dave wouldn’t win against Chuck. CN will make Hassel the Hoff piss his pants without alcohol.

    Beside that David is one of my heros. Because he helped to break down the Wall. All German people loves him. He is our Jesse James.

  4. I agree the Hoffmeister is a God. Not only is he a world famous actor, singer and advocate for tight jeans, but he reunited Germany and single-handedly brought an end to the cold war. The Nobel is surely already in the post.